A Nevada man pled guilty of felony poaching Tuesday, stemming from a case discovered Jan. 7, of this year when a mule deer was illegally shot and left to rot near Fallon.
Chad R. Blumhagen, 27, of Fallon pled guilty to unlawful killing of a big game animal during a closed season and without a tag. He was sentenced in Churchill County District Court to a suspended jail sentence of 12-32 months and was given five years probation. Blumhagen was also prohibited from hunting or fishing for the duration of his probation and cannot be associated with anyone hunting or fishing. He also cannot posses any antlers or wildlife parts, cannot drink alcohol and has a curfew imposed by the court. He was also ordered to forfeit all equipment used in the crime, except his vehicle.
"This is a serious crime, and we are satisfied with the outcome of the prosecution," said Rob Buonamici, chief law enforcement officer for the Nevada Department of Wildlife. "This man shot in close proximity to houses and then recklessly fled the area. This case clearly shows that poaching not only steals wildlife from Nevadans, it can also pose a real danger to the public."
After his crime was discovered, Blumhagen evaded game wardens. He finally surrendered to law enforcement authorities only after the investigation led to an arrest warrant being issued. The crime was reported by a concerned member of the public, still the best source of information for discovering poached animals. Sportsmen and members of the public can report wildlife violations to Operation Game Thief at (800) 992-3030. To learn more about game wardens and wildlife in Nevada visit NDOW on the web at www.ndow.org. The Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) protects, restores and manages fish and wildlife, and promotes fishing, hunting, and boating safety. NDOW's wildlife and habitat conservation efforts are primarily funded by sportsmen's license and conservation fees and a federal surcharge on hunting and fishing gear. Support wildlife and habitat conservation in Nevada by purchasing a hunting, fishing, or combination license.